If one thing has stuck in my mind in the five years since Wargaming released World of Tanks and grew into the company it is today, it's this: Wargaming knows how to make a spectacle.
Last year, it celebrated the launch of World of Warships by firing a ship-mounted cannon; this year, celebrating the centenary of the tank itself, it's driven a reproduction World War I tank directly into Trafalgar Square. Wargaming knows that without this tank, it wouldn't be where it is now, and in further recognition of this it's bringing a celebratory mode to the PC and console versions of the game as well as to the mobile Blitz edition.
The Mark I tank is remarkable not for the amount of firepower it brought to the battle; it wasn't about that. The Mark I was the cure for trench warfare, capable of driving straight over trenches while trundling its way at below five miles per hour across the battlefield, moving through barbed wire and the other assorted nastiness that made up The Battle of The Somme.
Anyway, without further ado, let's talk about modes.
The PC version of World of Tanks is going to get the Convoy mode. You won't be getting behind the controls of the WWI tank itself, the studio justifiably worried that the tanks top speed of 3.5mph would be a yawn-fest and not very fair to whoever got stuck driving it, or more accurately oozing it, across the battlefield.
Still, you'll be keeping pace with it, as your team zip around in Lanchester Armoured Cars trying to shield this Mark I tank as it cruises to victory across the all-new WWI-themed battlefield.
Convoy will only be playable until October 5th, but delivers a unique game mode for people tired of running away from Panzers each game. If nothing else, how often does World of Tanks let you drive around on 4 wheels?
The console version of the game gets Trench Warfare, although only for two weekends. I've been tardy here and you've missed the first weekend already. Sorry. Nonetheless, between September 23rd and 26th you can play this Trench Warfare game mode, which pits two teams of Mark I tanks against each other.
They'll move faster than the Mark I in Convoy, and they've got a flamethrower too. To enjoy this barbeque, they'll be taking to an all-new map, littered with trenches, wire and other fortifications. It's trench war, but not as we've ever seen it before.
Mark 1 Battle
In Blitz, you've got a simpler mode. Starting today, September 19th, you can chug around in a 7-vs-7 battle where all of you are piloting Mark I tanks in a battle to the death. It's not quite as expansive as the game modes on other platforms, but when you bear in mind you're essentially playing World of Tanks on your phone, it feels like enough. It's tough to write about, mind. If you want to kick seven shades of something out of folk as a WWI tank… this is for you.
Let's look at that tank a bit more, shall we?